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Shareware CD-ROMs

One of the most historically important artifacts to come from the home computer telecommunications revolution was shareware CDs, compact discs put out by companies containing hundreds of megabytes of shareware. Initially containing less than the full capacity of the discs (600mb, later 700mb) these items eventually began brimming with any sort of computer data that could be packaged and sold. As material "ran out", that is, as sellers of these CDs found they were unable to easily find shareware programs and files, the hunt began to track down every last file and item that could make the quarterly or monthly quota. As a result, many otherwise-lost pieces of computer history were gathered up in the trawling nets of these individuals and companies and were preserved for future generations.
Some computer bulletin board services would attach banks of CD-ROM drives to their machines to allow users to access the discs, allowing the system operators (SysOps) to claim the BBS had thousands of files available. For this market, CD makers would declare their CDs "BBS Ready", meaning an easily-readable directory of file descriptions was located on the CDs to be read by the BBS software.

While many of the CDs contain shareware programs, a number branched into music, graphics, animations and movies. Additionally, the advent of an internet open to the general public heralded massive collected sets of files which CD makers happily mirrored and made available to the BBS market. Eventually, as operating systems like Linux and FreeBSD became more widely available, CDs were perfect distribution mechanisms for the very large libraries and file collections associated with them.

A number of the initial CD images for this collection came courtesy of the CD BBS of Twin Falls, Idaho, operated by Mark Fugitt (sysop) and Mike Laybourn (remote sysop). The system used a Harris 286 CPU operating at 20MHZ, two 65 Megabit Seagate RLL hard drives and a Dennon CD player that used a "cart" to hold the CD. The BBS was started using RBBS software, a single phone line with 2400 baud modem and a shareware CD.

Additional donations of CD-ROMs have come from Erik Pederson, Peter Simpson, Chuck Gilbert, Koos van den Hout, MCbx, Jason Scott, Tim Hazel, and others.

2,826
RESULTS
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PART OF
CD-ROM Software Collection
Media Type
2,807
software
15
data
2
movies
2
texts
Year
1
2014
1
2013
4
2012
1
2011
6
2010
7
2009
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Topics & Subjects
88
Amiga CD-ROM
72
Curtis Kemp
72
Mike Woltz
71
Mark Fugitt
71
Mike Laybourn
69
CD-BBS
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Collection
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Creator
56
gti / schatztruhe
23
baen publishing
22
fred fish
12
interactive entertainment
11
berkeley macintosh user's group
11
lotek style
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Language
2,374
English
70
German
68
Japanese
21
French
10
Italian
9
Russian
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SHOW DETAILS
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Title
Date Published
Creator
Integrated Device Technlogy Product and Company Information (October 1995)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
CNE Shrt Course (New Riders Publishing)(1995)
OpenMail Enterprise Administration Release B.04.00 (5999 1054)(HP)(1996)
Maxim Integrated Products Full Line Data Catalog (1998 Edition)(Version 2.0)(Maxim)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
CYBER.XPO.95 (Arsenal Computer)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
Next Generation DRAMs (CMP Publications)(1995)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
Personal Financial Advisor (Arsenal Computer)
Linux Configuration and Installation (MIS Press) (Patrick Volkerding)(1995)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
HP 9000 Series 700 B2826 13613 (October 1992)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
By Popular Request 2.0 (Arsenal Computer)
CSi Compuserve (META CD1833)(Compuserve Incorporated)(1996)
By Popular Request (Arsenal Computer)(SysOptics Distribution System)
Earthlink Network TotalAccess Internet Including Air Warrior (Earthlink Network)(1996)
Sign on Today 50 Free Hours Version 3.0 is Here (America On Line)(RO3241)(1997)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
PC Technician (ROMSoft)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
The Pier Shareware #4 (The Pier Exchange) (1994)
Shareware Studio CD ROM Volume III (Data Express, Inc.)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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comment 0
PowerPak Gold (Fall 1992)(Flordia Lion's Den)
UA Business Software Product Trial Software (1999)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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comment 0
Night Owl (NOPV 12)(Night Owl Publishing)(1994)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
SysOp's Arsenal 1 (Arsenal Computer)
Night Owl Windows #2 (Night Owl Publisher) (1995)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
Power Tools (Disc 1)(October 1993)(HP)
Power Tools Plus (Disc 2 of 2)(November 1993)(HP)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
The Pier Shareware #8 (The Pier Exchange) (1996)
Electronic Library of Art Renaissance Masters I (EBook)(ELARM1 92)(1992)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
Education For All Ages (Arsenal Computer)
The Arsenal Files Collection #8 (Arsenal Computer) (1996)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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comment 0
PCBFiles Version 1.0 (Arsenal Computer)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
Learning Heaven (Most Significant Bits) (1993)
Earthlink Network Total Access Internet (Earthlink Network) 1996
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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comment 0
Title Wave Family PC Card Studio (Uniloc)
Turn the Power On! HP Workstations Volume II (HP) (1994)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
Deathmatch Arsenal V1.0 (Arsenal Computer)
TurboTax Deluxe (Final Version Tax Year 1995)(v95.01)
InoculateIT Workgroup Advanced Editions Trial Copy (Computer Associates) (1999)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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comment 0
KnowAll Version 1.0 (WorldFree.Net)
Stamps.Com Startup Disk Mailing and Shipping Made Easy (Stamps.com) (2005)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
ShareWare OnLine Volume 1 (CMS Software)(1992)
The Arsenal Files Collection #7 (Arsenal Computer)(1996)
Power Tools Plus (Disc 1 of 2)(November 1993)(HP)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
Night Owl (NOPV 16)(Night Owl Publishing)(1995)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
Night Owl (NOPV 11)(Night Owl Publishing)(1994)
Beethoven's 5th A Music Lovers Multimedia Guide (InterActive)(1993)
Critical Infrastructure Protection Version 1.0 (Unclassified) (December 2003)
CompuServe The Information Service You Won't Outgrow
ASL Software Publishing Word Processing Desktop Publishing PAK 1 (1995)
Night Owl The Best of Shareware (NOPV 20)(Night Owl Publisher)(1996)
The Rift Preview Build 39 Throughwave Technology (Confidential) (1999)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
Shareware Studio CD ROM Volume IV (Data Express)
System Administrator Incident Preparation and Reponse (SAPIR NT) Version 1.1 (July 1999)
Impatica for Powerpoint Blackberry Edition (Early Access) (Show Special) (Fall 2004)
Banzi Bug The Flight Sim with an Attitude Demo Sampler (Grolier) (1998)
Information Assurance for Auditors and Evaluators Version 1.04 (October 1998)
The Arsenal Cookbook Digital Home and Hobby Guide (Arsenal Computer)
Case Western Reserve University Annual Fund (2005)
PC Karaoke Sing Along with Family Fun (Sirius Publishing)(1993)
Shot Magazine #6 Anno 3 Numero 6 (Marzo 2000) (March 2000)
Pacific Bell Internet Services Insert, Click and Go! (COMM404c) (1995)
Air Tue Tools High Speed Spindles and Hand Tools (CE)
A Guide to Multimedia Super Show and Tell (Ask Me) (1994)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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comment 0
Distant Suns First Light Version 1.0 (Geosphere)
SSAA Preparation Guide Version 1.0 (Defense Information Systems Agency) (December 2003)
Night Owl The Best of Shareware (NOPV 17)(Night Owl Publisher)(1995)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
Power Tools (Disc 2)(October 1993)(HP)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
AJ's Desktop Themes (AJ Russo)(1996)
Component Source Promotional CD #14 (November 1997)
Software Tool Chest (CMS Software)(CDR 1760)(1994)
Perl Your Visual Blueprint for Building Perl Scripts (IDG Books) (2000)
Information Assurance for Auditoris and Evaluators (Version 1.04) (Unclassified) (October 1998)
A Visual Tour Computer Associates Enterprise Management Solutions (Version 1.0) (Computer Associates)
Unicenter TNG A Visual Tour (Computer Associates) (1998)
Shareware CD-ROMs
software
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favorite 0
comment 0
Turn the Power On! HP Volume III (HP)(1995)
The SysOP's Companion (Tropical Publishing) (1993)
Monster Media Number 16 (Monster Media)(October 1996)